A few days ago, in the face of uncertainty, the LGBTQ community got the biggest win of all – in The Supreme Court ruling legalizing same-sex marriage across every state. Love endured and love one.
While we relish in this news and progress as a country, minds are already thinking about the future. And as far as the geek/nerd community is concerned, the question of homesexual representation in the MCU was posed to Marvel Studios President Kevin Feige during his press tour for Ant-Man.
Here’s what Feige told SlashFilm when asked when fans would finally see an LGBTQ character in future Marvel films:
“The answer is, there is no reason why that can’t happen any time soon. You know, we pull the characters from the comics, for the most part, and they’ve been forging new ground for decades in the comics. They’ve been very progressive in the comics. And even more recently in a very important and progressive way. And we keep track of all of those things and are inspired by all of those things, so I’d love it to find an organic, meaningful and natural way for that to happen at some point in the not so distant future.”
Marvel Comics does have a myriad of homosexual or bisexual characters in which to draw from should and when they introduce them in the MCU. Marvel Wikia lists 129 homosexual characters. Recently Marvel revealed Iceman/Bobby Drake to be gay in a storyline in All New X-Men #40. Alpha Flight‘s Northstar came out in 1992, and in 2012 they had a mainstream newsworthy cover featuring Northstar’s wedding. In the Ultimate Universe, there’s Ultimate Spider-Woman, and Jessica Drew, as well as Young Avengers Hulking and Wiccan. Fans will point out that a LGBTQ character was utilized in Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD on ABC. However, her sexuality was not addressed. She honestly wasn’t around long enough for much of anything about her character to be divulged.
I, for one, think it is important for gay and bi characters to be featured in Marvel films, as to reflect the world and people around us. However, making it an overly defining characteristic, retconning a character, or purposely pandering to a community for the sake of inclusion alone would not be the way the route to take.
Marvel’s greatest triumph in its comics and films has always been putting a focus on humanism in the face of extraordinary circumstances.In echoing Feige’s sentiment – the addition of any diversity should feel real and honest. Otherwise it’s a forced representation that overshadows the intended sense of humanity; and becomes a thing for the sake of being a thing.